Disaster – Dropped Camera

On occasion, I have muscle and nerve spasms, most of the time nothing major occurs. This week was different while moving away after photographing a subject for Assignment 5, I suddenly and unexpectedly spasmed and dropped my camera and bag.

Whilst the bag should have protected everything, this time around, the bag split open and out tumbled everything. One camera, two lenses, assorted items and myself landed very roughly onto the ground.

Assessing the damage was heart breaking and now I have to procure a replacement.

 

Exercise 5.5 – Create A Slideshow

The exercise asks the student to prepare a Slideshow to present their ongoing work with Assignment 5. 

The exercise asks the student to consider a few points when creating the slideshow. 

  1. Is the Slideshow the most appropriate treatment for the work? 
  1. The length of the slideshow, how long will it run? 
  1. What relevant audio or textual material will accompany the images? 
  1. Consider the relevance of any music used? Ensure if music is used that it is available and suitable for use, and credit the artists. 

The exercise ensures the student that complex software such as Final Cut is not required and that the student should familiarise themselves with whatever software they plan to use. 

At first, I was tempted to use PowerPoint for the slideshow, but after looking at the application, I felt it did not meet my needs. I then considered Windows 10 Videomaker but found again that the software did not meet the requirements I had. In the end, I used Nero Video which I was familiar with and while it did not have all the refinements I wanted it suited the exercise. 

 Gathering more of the work together I decided to continue to use the alphabetical sequence as it fitted with the original document which started the project and guided the brief. 

After processing the images, I worked out a template for the images and the text and started to create the slideshow. I was heavily influenced by “Looking at the Land” curated by Andy Adams, which I viewed in the previous exercise. I really like the clean, clear layout and I felt it was suitable for the treatment of my work. 

Once I had the images in sequence within the application, I started to examine the look and design and tweaked the layout slightly. Then I watched the slideshow and changed the timings to allow more time for the viewer to read each image. 

After draughting and finalising a narration piece, I used Audacity and Lame to produce the narration. Slicing the narration into paragraphs which then allowed me to move them about to improve the timing and sequencing.  

Once I had changed the timing on the images to fit the narration better and again increase the amount of time for each image, which now also included a transition. I felt that there were still too many quiet moments in the slideshow, so I chose a piece of music available via creative commons, the piece was chosen because it met the requirements for a peaceful Celtic sound. 

Once again, I reviewed the slideshow adjusting the timings to suit what I wanted. Even in the final version, I am still not happy with the transitions, but it was one of the few which were not too over the top. 

The slideshow can be viewed below. 

 

Conclusion

On review, while the exercise has introduced the treatments of online exhibitions to me for my own work, I am not sure that it is the correct treatment for the Assignment. 

I feel that the presentation, being Audio/Video, does not meet the requirement of the brief, which is to make a number of accessible pieces which can be viewed and touched by individuals with visual impairments 

I will however not discount the concept of an online exhibition as it is a good way to show and display certain works. 

 

Exercise 5.4 – Online Exhibitions

The exercise asks the student to examine the post by Sharon Boothroyd on the WeAreOca website and watch the online exhibition of work.

The online exhibition is Looking at the Land — 21st Century American Views which was curated by Andy Adams for the website Flakphoto.

The exhibition is an interesting view of the American landscape and the lives of the American people and how the interact with the landscape.

We are asked to leave a comment on the WeAreOca page; a copy of which I have pasted below.

Initially, I was taken aback by the silence but quickly reflected on the position of the curator, who would have had the impossible task of finding and fitting a sound to each image. Such as clash would have interrupted the peacefulness of the exhibition.

Watching full screen, in a darkened room, allowed me, as the viewer to concentrate on each image and examine the representation and context of each image. I did not pause or manipulate the timing, but let the Vimeo video to run at the pace decided by the Curator (Andy Adams).

Overall, it gave an interesting view of the ongoing changes within America, while we have suburban views, industry peaked over from the background. Sand dunes representative of Ansel Adams images, had powerlines running through the image, demonstrating the ongoing changes made by man on the landscape.

 

Exercise 5.3 – Print on Demand Mockup

The student is asked to familiarise themselves with the process of print-on-demand applications and experiment with book design by supposing that that for this exercise that they will be producing a book to present their photographs for Assignment 5. 

The exercise suggests setting up an account with a print on demand service, such as Blurb, Blookup, Lulu, or tradeprint. 

I downloaded Blurbs Bookwright software, as it fitted the profile of the exercise, was simple to use and provided the required print to PDF feature. 

Before I started working on the proof, I examined the rationale for printing my work for Assignment 5. To be honest I am not quite sure that the brief and the work fits in with being presented as a book.  

As part of the exercise, I returned to browsing a number of monographs and art books to try and get familiar with the differing styles of layout, editing and sequencing of the images. Two books stood out as either end of the spectrum 

The first is Sons of Sinbad (Villers, A, 2006), which documented Villers journey from the Red Sea to Kuwait on Dhows between 1938 and 1939), the book contains hundreds of monochrome photographs of not only the people but their cultures and landscapes. Each section comes with a map and very detailed text on the journey.  

The second is Land (Godwin, F, 1985), once past the introductory text, the reader is left to browse through the photographs as they jump geographically around the country. The images presented on ivory paper, allow the monochromic images a chance to define themselves and stand out from the page. 

I feel that the work I am producing for Assignment 5 is closer in nature to Godwins Land, then to Villers, Sons of Sinbad. Although having given it the subject a lot of thought, the work could be expanded in detail, to become a similar style. 

The main stepping stone for me was the introduction, similar in nature to a musical piece, without a good hook, it can be difficult to draw the audience in, so I muddled over the introduction for some time. 

While the work for the Assignment is not complete, I have attached the PDF to this part of the learning log as required by the exercise. I still have quite a bit to go to complete the Assignment. 

doocots mockup

Certainly, the exercise has taught me several lessons. One of which is that my design skills need a good polish and I have quite a bit of learning about the layout and design of a book. Overall this has been an interesting exercise as it has pushed me to explore different options for displaying my work and made me consider how I can expand on a brief to produce a different piece of work later on. 

References 

Godwin, F., 1985. Land. William Heinemann Ltd. 

Magnus, L., 2013. The Public Catalogue Foundation Oil Painting in Public Ownership Southern Scotland. 1st ed. United Kingdom: The Public Catalogue Foundation. 

Villiers, V., 2010. Sons of Sindbad. (s.n.). 

 

 

 

 

Reflection on upcoming exercises.

The next two exercises are of great interest to me. During my level 1 course, an exercise asked that I put together a set of photographs as a proposal to the magazine article.

To be honest, I was never happy with the results, it was not the images that let me down, rather it was the presentation and the actual words of the article. I used Lorem Ipsum as the article text and it just did not feel right.

Now, in the next two exercises, I have to present a sample of a book and a slideshow, both of which, to me, must look better presented. It is time, that I, as an artist, start to consider how I want to present my work. For this, I am going to have to battle against my dyslexia and my visual impairment, so that I can improve my work, my presentation skills and my professionalism.

Sudden Halt

Things have come to a grinding halt after I received a telephone call from the NHS. I have been waiting for an operation for quite some considerable time and suddenly there was the chance of an appointment at another hospital.

I decided on balance that it was better in the long term that I have the operation now, rather than wait for a more convenient time as I am in some considerable pain.

However, this will give me a chance to consider my preparation work for the next two exercises.